By the thermal activation of DUCON-panels through incorporating capillary tubes into the micro-reinforcement the DUCON-Technology gets another interdisciplinary property. Thereby DUCON-plates become an active part of a production system in the field of energy management.
This innovative feature uses already the unique research project ETA-Factory (Energy-Efficiency-, Technology- and Application-Center) of TU Darmstadt. The research project examines representative production plants of metalworking under energy efficiency aspects. In addition to the energy improvement of individual production plants, the primary aim is to network the periphery of the production plants, the building services and the building envelope to enable further energy-savings and -efficiencies.
The outer shell of the ETA-Factory is made out of 11 m long and 5.5 cm thin DUCON-panels with thermal activation. Due to the good heat conductivity and high heat storage capacity of concrete the DUCON-panels are suited as an effective cooling surface in winter and summer (by wetting with collected rain water and the following evaporation effect). The evaporation effect causes on summer days with a daily maximum temperature of 33 °C and a temperature level of the supplied heat transfer medium of 40 °C a cooling capacity of 386.4 kWh (at 280 m2 activated surface; 6:00 to 18:00 pm). At night, the cooling capacity was 537.6 kWh. Thus the daily cooling demand of the production of about 100 kWh is covered by a multiple. In the transitional periods the DUCON-panels support heating as a massive absorber.
In this form DUCON-panels contribute actively in an interdisciplinary energy management.